Decatur Sweepstakes 'Winner' Loses $800
A woman paid an $800 advance so she could receive $2.5 million from the Mega Millions Sweepstakes Awards. She ended up with nothing.
A Decatur women apparently was tricked out of $800 by men claiming she'd won $2.5 million in a sweepstakes.
They first contacted her Nov. 26 and told her she'd won the money in the Mega Millions Sweepstakes Awards--a name often used in fraud schemes. She said they required "an advance" of $800 before she could secure her winnings. She sent the money with a Walmart MoneyPak.
They contacted her again and asked for an extra $2,700 to ensure payment. She refused and demanded a refund on the $800.
Since then, she hasn't heard from the men. They identified themselves as Jonas Weatherby, Howard James and Peter Blake.
She provided police with the receipt on the $800 payment and two phone numbers they called from in Reno and Las Vegas, Nev.
The Better Business Bureau and other organizations have issued warnings against sweepstakes fraud schemes. In October, the Missouri attorney general filed charges against a Florida man for tricking elderly people out of money, sometimes saying they'd won the Mega Millions Sweepstakes.